We’re just a few months into the year, and already the 2020 presidential nominee pool is incredibly crowded with names both famous and not. Here, get to know a bit about every person who’s thrown their hat into the race.
Beto O’Rourke (D)
After much speculation about whether he’d join the race, the former congressman from El Paso, Texas, is officially in the running. O’Rourke gained a national platform after he went up against, and ultimately lost to, incumbent Ted Cruz for Texas’ open senate seat in the 2018 midterm elections. As someone who used to represent a district on the border, O’Rourke has been outspoken about his views on immigration, saying that America does not need a border wall and that he supports DREAMers.
Learn where Beto O’Rourke stands on nine important issues, here.
Bernie Sanders (D)
This will be the second time Sanders, who’s currently a Vermont senator, has run for president, having lost to Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary in 2016. Sanders is an independent (who caucuses with Democrats) and a self-described democratic socialist who has been credited for pushing the party further to the left, including championing policies like Medicare for all, a $15 federal minimum wage, and free college tuition.
Learn where Bernie Sanders stands on nine important issues, here.
Amy Klobuchar (D)
Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar is the latest female senator to enter the 2020 Democratic presidential race. She has a track record of racking up votes in middle America and is known to boast bipartisanship, as opposed to a more radical left-leaning platform. As her campaign has unfolded, there have been numerous reports from former staffers that Klobuchar is a difficult boss, but she’s already responded, saying, “I have high expectations for myself, I have high expectations for the people that work for me, but I have high expectations for this country.”
Learn where Amy Klobuchar stands on nine important issues, here.
Cory Booker (D)
The New Jersey Senator entered the race at the start of Black History Month, declaring, “I believe that we can build a country where no one is forgotten, no one is left behind.” Booker is the former “super mayor” of Newark, where he once famously saved a woman from a burning building. A well-known Democrat, Booker is for a federal jobs guarantee, Medicare for all, combating the affordable housing crisis, and he’s introduced a bill that would essentially create a federally-funded savings account for every American child.
Learn where Cory Booker stands on nine important issues, here.
Pete Buttigieg (D)
If elected, Buttigieg would be the youngest president ever at just 37 years old. The current mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Buttigieg is also an Afghanistan war veteran, and would become the first openly gay presidential nominee from a major party, if he won the Democratic nomination.
Learn where Pete Buttigieg stands on nine important issues, here.
Julián Castro (D)
Castro has entered the race for president with a somewhat substantial political resume: He was the former mayor of San Antonio, Texas, and he also served as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama. (In 2016, he was also in the running to be Hillary Clinton’s vice president.) Look out for his policies on immigration reform (he’s the grandson of an immigrant himself), Medicare for all, and a plan for universal pre-kindergarten.
Kirsten Gillibrand (D)
The New York Senator announced her presidential run on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, saying, “As a young mom, I’m going to fight for other people’s kids as hard as I would fight for my own.” In recent years, Gillibrand has made a name for herself by being adamantly anti-Trump (she has voted against his Cabinet appointees more than any other senator) and for being an advocate for sexual assault survivors. However, it’s worth noting that a few of her positions have flipped from her time representing a more conservative district in the House of Representatives to her current years in the Senate.
Learn where Kirsten Gillibrand stands on nine important issues, here.
Kamala Harris (D)
The former California Attorney General and current California senator is shaping up to be a front-runner in the race to become the Democratic Party’s 2020 presidential nominee. And if Harris were to secure the nomination, she would become the first African-American woman to be a major party’s nominee for president. Harris has supported Medicare for all, proposed giving a tax credit to the middle class, and has plans to combat the affordable housing crisis. However, she’s also had to contend with—and will probably have to continuously answer for—her controversial record as a prosecutor.
Learn where Kamala Harris stands on nine important issues, here.
John Delaney (D)
The former three-term Maryland congressman has already visited every county in Iowa and has been running for president since 2017. While he’s endorsed popular liberal platforms like universal healthcare, he’s mostly focused on bipartisanship.
Tulsi Gabbard (D)
Gabbard, who’s 37, currently serves as a congresswoman from Hawaii and is an Iraq war veteran and a former Bernie Sanders supporter. She’s outspoken about combating climate change, avoiding American military intervention, and has positioned herself as a controversial figure in the Democratic Party. She’s also already had to answer some questions about her past, including work she once did for an anti-LGBT group, which she has since apologized for.
Elizabeth Warren (D)
Warren was the first major candidate to enter the running to become the Democratic Party’s 2020 presidential nominee. The Massachusetts senator made a name for herself during the 2008 financial crisis when she oversaw the bank bailouts and went onto to create the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Now, she’s running on a platform of universal child care, affordable healthcare, and a tax on the ultra-wealthy.
Learn where Elizabeth Warren stands on nine important issues, here.
Marianne Williamson (D)
Williamson is not a career politician, but rather an author, self-help guru, former Kardashian-approved congressional candidate, AIDS activist, and Oprah’s spiritual friend. She’s long encouraged other women to run for office, and now seems to be taking her own advice. In her campaign announcement video, she said, “We have to fall in love again with what this country can mean.”
Learn more about Williamson, here.
Andrew Yang (D)
Yang is a seasoned businessman who founded the Venture for America nonprofit, which aims to assist young entrepreneurs. While he doesn’t come with any political experience, Yang has been touting his proposal for a universal basic income of $1,000 for all Americans over the age of 18.
Jay Inslee (D)
Jay Inslee, the current governor of Washington, joined the race with a clear message: Climate change would be his top priority. The environment was the sole topic of his announcement video, where he declared, “Our country’s next mission must be to rise up to the most urgent challenge of our time: defeating climate change.” He’s the first governor to enter the race and also comes with years of experience in the U.S. House of Representatives as well as the Washington House of Representatives.
John Hickenlooper (D)
John Hickenlooper, the former governor of Colorado, has entered the race, saying in his campaign video that he’s running for president “because we’re facing a crisis that threatens everything we stand for.” In the video, he lists some of his accomplishments as governor, including expanding Medicaid, strengthening the economy, passing gun control legislation, and creating tough methane emissions regulations. Before becoming governor, Hickenlooper was the mayor of Denver, as well as a geologist and the owner of a local brewpub.
Wayne Messam (D)
Wayne Messam entered the race in March, becoming one of several mayors to vie for the 2020 Democratic spot. He’s been mayor of Miramar, Florida since 2015 and was the first African American mayor of his city. You might also know him from his time playing football for Florida State University, where he helped the team win a National Championship.
Tim Ryan (D)
Tim Ryan is the current congressman from Ohio’s 13th district, and you might know him from his unsuccessful attempt to challenge Nancy Pelosi as the House Democratic leader in 2016. According to Rolling Stone, the Ohio native is a proponent of fair trade policies, clean-tech manufacturing, and investment in Midwest companies. The magazine reports that Ryan said “he plans to be the candidate focused squarely on a national strategy for revitalizing the Rust Belt and other depressed parts of the country.”
Eric Swalwell (D)
California congressman Eric Swalwell announced on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert that he’d be running for president in 2020. The Iowa native and former prosecutor has been in the House of Representatives since 2013 and is now part of the House Intelligence Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. In a recent interview with Esquire, Swalwell spoke out his priorities entering the race, saying, “I’m going to be an aspirational candidate who believes that in our lifetime we could have 100 percent renewables when it comes to energy; that in our lifetime we could have publicly financed campaigns; that in our lifetime we could buy back and ban every single assault weapon.”
Donald Trump (R)
You already know him, and you probably already have some strong feelings about him. Donald Trump is currently the president of the United States, and it’s no secret that he’ll be running for a second term. At the time of publication, Trump has already hired more than 30 full-time staffers for his 2020 campaign, according to Politico. So let’s all start planning our drinking game where we take a shot every time Trump mentions the border wall on the campaign trail.
Bill Weld (R)
Former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld recently announced he’ll be running for the Republican Party’s 2020 presidential nomination. In 2016, Weld ran for vice president as a Libertarian, and according to FiveThirtyEight, he has supported gay rights and abortion in the past.
This post will continue to be updated.